This mother is just a shell of a person, like most narcissists. I bet Dr. Phil wanted to wring her neck. I wanted to say, “Repeat after me…It’s clear I screwed up and I’m terribly sorry.” I had to apologize to my own kids SO many times.
In Beauty for Ashes Part I, I promised you a visual example of God’s ability to make something spectacular out of lowly ashes. As I mentioned in my post, it’s fairly close to home. Mt. Mazama, tucked into the Cascade Range in Oregon, is even more beautiful as a crater than she must have been 6,000 years ago as a mountain.
Isn’t it amazing how God can take a barren wreck and turn it into a work of art?
WHY did you walk into Umpqua Community College in Roseburg, Oregon, and shoot all those innocent people? Did you simply want infamy, your five minutes of fame? National attention? Well, you got it. How does it feel over there on the other side?
WHAT demonic obsession made you decide that a shoot-out was the only way to get people to notice you?
Didn’t you realize there are many other non-destructive ways to get attention? You could’ve helped out at the local homeless shelter. That would’ve gotten you some kudos. Or you could’ve been a mentor, a big brother, to a needy kid.
Guess what? You’re not a hero. The other Chris — Chris Mintz, the guy who tackled you, will live on in the American psyche as the true hero. He’s going to survive, and he’s going to thrive. But the poor students you killed…c’mon, a nineteen-year-old? Again I ask, WHAT were you thinking?
I want you to know I’m currently writing my second novel in my Hot Topic Fiction series, and it’s about YOU. More specifically, a family who is victimized by a YOU. I’m blown away by your timing. HOW did you know I was already telling the world about you in my fiction?
But most of all…what’s going through your mind RIGHT NOW?
I love Cats The Musical. Picture a tribe of human-sized cats slinking around dark alleys under the moonlight, discussing deep subjects like happiness and the meaning of life. Then Grizabella leaps onto the scene, singing that heart-tugging number we’ve heard a million times on the radio, TV, and in karaoke bars, Memory– the anthem of single mothers everywhere.
All alone in the moonlight
I can smile at the old days
I was beautiful then
A time I knew what happiness was
Let the memory live again
~~Written by Trevor Nunn
Poignant, bittersweet. Celebration of a former life, Mourning over loss. The song turns dark, depressing, finally ending on a note of hope:
Look, a new day has begun.
But sometimes, during the dark days, before the new day dawns, we can barely make it through the now. And what about our kids? They suffer the most when a parent leaves. As I mentioned in a previous post, my divorce took its toll on my kids in numerous ways. If the divorce hadn’t happened, would they have been drawn to more respectable friends, instead of judging potential companions by their “cool” factor? Would my under-achieving son have lived up to his potential?
Sad to say, we’ll never know the answer to these questions until we get to heaven. In the meantime, I found the ministry Focus on the Family a wonderful source for solo mamas. The attached article tells how we can let God heal broken hearts…not only ours, but our kids most of all.
In an earlier post, I quoted another blogger who said: “You should have been understood and loved for who you were, not who they wanted you to be.” It resonated so deeply, having been one of “those” children. (See original post here.)
Got me to thinking about the times I got in trouble as a child for being my inquisitive, curious self. I loved to explore other people’s homes–I just HAD to see what was behind that closed door, down those steps. My mother sold Fuller Brush (remember the Fuller Brush man? If you’re over a certain age, you’re probably nodding right now.) After a while, my mom made me stay in the car while she dropped off her customers’ products. Because she knew I’d embarrass her by “exploring” her friends’ homes.
If I saw a path, I tugged on my parent’s hand and begged them to take me down it. And to this day, I can’t resist a new, unexplored trail. Speaking of paths and trails…when it came time to choose a career, I took two or three paths, turned around when they dead-ended, and finally found a permanent one. What a great feeling, to find a path that goes on and on! What’s around that next corner, anyway?
But I’m getting sidetracked (not much has changed in four decades.) When I was eight or so, it all culminated here:
My family joined several other families at this “castle” in Northern California for a retreat. While my parents were otherwise occupied, I occupied myself by trying to find a way to get to the very top of this place. At the back of the big room where they all gathered, I found an opening, leading to a big empty area, at the back of which were…stairs! Narrow, winding stairs! Leading all the way to the top, and ending in a little round turret room with an amazing view!! I ran downstairs and pulled my friend out of her room and showed her my discovery. Well, word got around, and I got scolded. But not too harshly. I suspect my parents were secretly impressed, and by this time knew it didn’t do any good to expect conformity from me.
It remains one of my favorite childhood memories. I’m convinced that urge to explore, to wander, has served me well in my writing career. But this time it’s imaginary worlds that I’m exploring.
Lucky Otter’s letter to her 2-year-old self. Does this resonate with you as much as it does with me? This sentence is almost verbatim what a dear family member said to me recently: “You should have been understood and loved for who you were, not who they wanted you to be.”
I categorized this under Substance Abuse because the lack of love in my family of origin I am convinced led to my alcohol addiction, years later. When I picked up that first drink, for the first time ever, I felt normal.
For most of my life I wanted to pretend you didn’t exist. You embarrassed me and made me look bad. You cried too much and made scenes. You were weak, sickly, scared of everything, and easily frustrated. You didn’t know how to talk to people and usually ran them off by telling them too much too soon. You were easily overwhelmed. You were too sensitive and didn’t know how to roll with the punches.
I am sorry I thought those things about you. I was mistaken, brainwashed by others. I didn’t want to understand you. It was too dangerous. I might have been punished or bullied for it. I was, in fact. I couldn’t let that happen anymore.
It wasn’t your fault you had problems. That was done to you. You had no say. You were a thoughtful and deep child, who loved to analyze and…
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